How Much Does It Cost to Develop a Mobile Game?
Mobile development is trending in the market and there are many opportunities for making money. Technologies like virtual reality and augmented reality bring hype to the gaming industry. It is difficult to estimate the exact cost of developing a game application because developing an exceptional game can cost a fortune.
Cost for game development can be determined by keeping some factors in mind which are
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Factors determining mobile game development cost
· Selection of operating system
Usually, Android or iOS game development is preferred to develop, but they come with their own perks. Choosing either platform affects the overall game expense. The payment and
administration system in Apple devices cost 25% more than Android devices. On the other hand, android will cost more if older versions are to be made compatible with the game. Choosing a hybrid system will have cost disadvantages from both platforms, but it is wise to use a hybrid system
· Pre-development cost
Brainstorming ideas about ideas for a game can lead to the deciding factor whether the game will be a success or not. Coming up with an idea for the story, plot, levels, and characters can be a challenge. Depending on the complexity of the game consult some experienced game developers. The pre-development cost can be classified into two more parts.
· Game Design
At this stage the levels, gameplay, plot, and target audience of the game are determined. Without following this step, it would be difficult to coordinate game development and there is a chance of facing glitches.
· Plot & Characters
Stories and characters are the basis to keep a game player engaged till the end of the game. Character design involves the personalities of the character and their interaction with the user.
Game planners charge on average 50$ per hour for a project. Keep in touch with planners on a daily basis because the planning stage involves communication between the developer and the game planner.
· Complications in game development
Once the planning stage is complete now comes the most important one which is developing the game from scratch. Game development can be categorized in terms of complexities, user interface, 2D, 3D, etc. Based on complexities game development can be classified into the following.
· Basic Games
These games cost $5k-$15k on average. Simple games like Pac-man and brick breaker costs around the lower range however endless games like “flappy birds” and the “dinosaur game” on google cost more.
These games cost $15k-$50k on average. Most games fall under this category as they are easy to develop and can be monetized easily. Some mobile games which fall under this category are “snake xenia”, “red bull”, etc.
· Mid-level Games
These games cost $50k-$100k on average. These games have storylines, visual impacts, and are 3D in nature mostly. As the budget is good it will empower the players to play and engage for a longer time. “Angry Birds” and “paper throw” will fall under this category.
· High-level Games
These games cost $100k-$200k on average. These are usually funded by investors and are complex in nature. Developing high-level games come with risk and
reward in the market. The game consists of a great level of attention to detail. The characters, plots, and storyline are top-notch. These games require a minimum time span of 1-2 years to complete. Call of duty is an example of high-level games.
Tools used for mobile game development
With the current situation, the global gaming industry has the potential to acquire 50% of the market share. With technologies like virtual reality, these factors are in favor of the gaming industry. Due to the expansion of technical problems like heating of device, limited storage, processing speed, and battery issue is either resolved or least concerning.
Some of the popular game development tools are.
· Unreal Engine
Unreal Engine is a brand new released by Epic Games. This game development tool comes with vast options for PC gaming. Unreal engine compromises graphical capabilities like dynamic lighting and particle system which handles a million particles in a scene simultaneously.
Unreal engine is based on C++ language with a friendly graphical user interface. It also comes with features of augmented reality and virtual reality.
Unity is a game development tool that works on the concept of arrays featuring both 2D and 3D arrays. It is one of the most used game development tools as it is easy to import to any operating system such as iOS, Android, and windows.
Unity works on a 3D application but has some limitations in designing some 3D cases, in such cases designs are made by a third-party app.
Lumberyard is an Amazon-based game development tool that is free to use for Android, iOS, Windows, Xbox, and PlayStation. Lumberyard includes C++ as a source for coding, its graphics are accelerated with terrain, character, and tools which help to create a 3D environment.
Challenges faced by developing a mobile application
Mobile game development is a remunerative industry with new innovations occurring on daily basis. Developers and large corporations are aiming to make conquest in this field. Achieving this milestone sounds amazing but is not easy to accomplish. A lot of challenges are faced by developers regarding the administration and monetization of mobile games.
It is important to take calculated risks and avoid making common mistakes that game developers make. Some challenges faced by developers are.
- Avoid scope creep (addition of new features frequently)
- Identifying the best monetization policy
- Customer retention
- Increase fund
- Securing user privacy